Take over of Temples- US Hindus to file Petition against GOI in Supreme Court

via HCINA Press Release published on December 20, 2007

ORLANDO, FLORIDA, December 18, 2007: A meeting of Hindu religious leaders, intellectual leaders, academics and activists has decided to file a petition against the Indian Government in the Supreme Court of India against the taking over of the management of temples in India by the government. A unanimous resolution to this effect was passed at the end of the three days of the Second biennial Hindu Dharma Summit, convened by the Hindu Collective Initiative of North America (HCINA). The HCINA is a collaborative body of 80 large Hindu organizations and temples across the US, formed in August 2005. Its mission statement is “To serve as a collective body of Hindu organizations including temples in North America; to facilitate networking and collaboration to address issues of common concern and benefits; and to co-ordinate collective initiatives to promote the understanding, practice and propagation of Hindu Dharma and culture through proper education and public policy.”

The HCINA general secretary, Ved Prakash Chaudhary, said a meeting would be held in New Delhi next year, when a petition would be filed against the government’s decision to take over the management of Hindu temples. “Why they are taking control of only Hindu temples and siphoning off the money to the treasury? Why they do not take over the management of a gurudwara, a mosque or a church? Most of us felt that this is the situation that we have to take up seriously,” Chaudhary said. Various alternative models were discussed during the meeting including the option of a Hindu Develaya Prabandhak Committee that would manage the temples.

Leading Hindus came from all over the globe to participate. The conference was planned and hosted by Hindu University of America.

The Summit leaders agreed that the Government of India should be paying more attention to the human rights issues in Kashmir, Bangladesh, Kazakhstan – where thousands of Hindus are involved. “We would soon be approaching the Government of India in this regard,” Chaudhary said.

The Dharma Summit – 2007 also decided to constitute a committee of Hindu academicians and teachers to prepare a supplementary text book material for schools in the United States. These supplemental books would be distributed to teachers and schools all over the US so that a true picture is presented to the students about Hinduism and Indian culture.

There were sessions on various other topics including one coordinated by youth relating to youth issues such as inter-faith marriages, effect on family, progeny and culture and accepting non-Hindus as Hindus.

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